April welcomes ExperieNCe Poetry, a month-long multi-cultural celebration of North Carolina poetry and poets and the latest in the Weymouth Wonderful 100 Celebration projects, and there’s no experience needed to enjoy! Throughout the month inspiring in-person events showcase a cross-section of NC poets, including NC Poet Laureates, state and local talent.
This celebration is the brainchild of Friends of Weymouth, Inc., board members Marilyn Barrett and Andie Rose, and has something for audiences of all ages. There will be a poem posted each day on Weymouth’s Facebook and Instagram pages, Poetry by the Pond Sunday Salons on April 3,10,17 and 24, and a high-energy Poetry Slam Jam, April 20.
“One of the most exciting things about this celebration is introducing NC Poets to a new and wider audience. This is also a way of bringing poetry to the forefront of the arts, of de-mystifying poetry and hopefully having more people connect with a poem or two. Since 1987 Weymouth Center has been the permanent home for the North Carolina Poetry Society,” said Pat Riviere-Seel, a Weymouth board member, ExperieNCe Poetry chair and also an esteemed North Carolina poet herself.
Sam Ragan, instrumental in the founding of the Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities was an accomplished writer, poet, journalist and publisher of The Pilot.
“Sam would love Poetry Month! Both the Writers-in-Residence Program and the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame were Sam’s dreams that he worked hard to bring to reality,” said Riviere-Seel. “I can see him standing by the pond, sporting his trademark el bowtie, and wearing a big smile as he declares the Weymouth Poetry Month celebrations, ‘splendid!’”
Poetry by the Pond invites the community to bring a chair or blanket and beverage and simply enjoy a poet reading original work beside the pond by the Carriage House on the back lawn. The first poet is Janet Ford, 2021 winner of the NC Poetry Society Susan Laughter Meyers Poetry Fellowship at Weymouth. The April 3,10,17 and 24 events begin at 4 pm and are free.
The Poetry Slam Jam will be a high energy and fun evening in the Great Room featuring local celebrities performing their favorite poems.
“We have some high energy characters, talented local writers and entertainers, coming to perform for us. I really look forward to how they play off each other. Will they slam or will they jam?,” Barrett said. “That’s entertainment!”
The April 20 event, at 5 pm, is free to the public but requires registration.
“Look for our daily posts of poems on Facebook and Instagram. Pat Riviere-Seel curated submissions from around the state into this wonderful collection. The first poem will be Sam Ragan’s ‘Walking into April’ about Weymouth’s gardens,” added Barrett.
Find more information about ExperieNCe Poetry at www.weymouthcenter.org and on Facebook and Instagram, or call (910) 692-6261.
Weymouth Center for the Arts and Humanities is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and home to the NC Literary Hall of Fame. Located at 555 East Connecticut Avenue, Southern Pines, 26-acres of gardens and grounds are free and open dawn-dusk.